Sam Allardyce says Everton’s FA Cup Third round tie with Liverpool is ‘win or bust’ in a 'glory game' where the Blues can attack with less pressure.
The Blues travel across Stanley Park on Friday night to take on their closest rivals, where they may change from the ‘park the bus’ method that secured them a point at Anfield earlier in the season.
Speaking to the media at Finch Farm, Allardyce said: “We are in a position where we can go for it. It is not a league game, there are no points available. It is win or bust, as simple as that.”
“It is a cup game, different from the Premier League. There is less pressure. It is a glory game,” the 63-year-old boss said. “You go out and seek the glory and try to win it. If we are to get through, we have to beat Liverpool. A draw is not good enough.”
The Blues have not won in their last three games, even failing to register a shot on target during the New Year’s Day defeat at home to Manchester United.
Allardyce wants to turn that around and get back to an unbeaten run similar to that of when he first took over the post.
“My responsibility is to get this team winning. The players are professional enough today to know the size of the game and make sure they try to deliver their best,” Allardyce said. “That is what they have to do – try to win on Friday night.”
Blues close on Tosun
Everton are looking to make Turkish forward Cenk Tosun their first signing of the January transfer window after Allardyce said he wanted to ‘sign goals’ during the winter window.
The club are close to a deal, to the point where the 26-year-old may be registered in time to start the game from the bench.
When quizzed about a potential deal, Allardyce said: “I think (the negotiations) are at personal terms - which is the final stage – after some long negotiation we have got to that stage. That might happen before the cup match if we are lucky but there is a medical, so it might be very tight.”
“Securing the player is the most important thing because it has been the club’s biggest area of concern, the number of goals we are capable of getting,” the Everton boss said.
“I think that on his track record, his age and his ability hopefully that will be the case."
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Everton will be without long-term absentees Ross Barkley, Leighton Baines, Seamus Coleman and Ramiro Funes Mori.
Centre-back Michael Keane injured his foot in the meeting with his former club on New Years Day and will miss the Merseyside Derby after receiving a number of stitches.
“Everybody else in the squad is okay,” Allardyce revealed.